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Island boogie

ryukyu.jpgFew music units describe their sound so exactly in their name as Ryukyu Disko. But while the requisite sanshin sound of Okinawan music is central to the textures of the group's dance music, it isn't quite as doctrinnaire as you might think. Made up of two brothers who go by the monikers RKD1 and RKD2, RKD is more than just Juliana's for the island set. There's a tongue-in-cheek appropriation of Okinawan sounds and images, and the result is dance music that sneaks up and tickles you.

Considering how packed and moving the Red Marquee was during the brothers' hour-long set, it doesn't seem like a lot of sneaking was going on. Though RKD's break beats are as massive as dancers demand, the added excitement of kacharsee rhythms boosted the hip-shaking component with its rapid accent on the upbeats. Breaks only made it that much more potent. RKD1 would often add real percussion, while his younger brother augmented matters with high-pitched vocal come-ons. They looked sort of funny with headphones atop their Okinawan headgear, but the whole point seems to be a juxtaposition of forms that might be funny together. With dancers spilling out all the way to the World Food Court, the joke was obviously appreciated by everyone.